Washington, DC — May 18, 2017 — After heartbreaking footage filmed by a Compassion Over Killing investigator revealed violent abuse of cows, an employee of Mason Dixon Farms — one of the largest dairy factory farms on the East Coast, with 2,500 cows — was charged with and pled guilty to three counts of animal cruelty, court records reveal.
Mason Dixon, the first dairy facility in the US to implement “robo-milking” of cows by machine, is a supplier to Land O’Lakes and Dairy Farmers of America (DFA).
In the video, workers are seen engaging in senseless and brutal cruelty toward gentle mother cows.
The undercover footage reveals:
- egregious cruelty to animals, including cows being kicked in the face, punched in their sensitive udders, excessively shocked with an electric prod, jabbed with pens or elbows, and having their tails twisted or bent by workers
- cows living in hazardous conditions, routinely getting stuck on water troughs or inside stalls and workers beating and abusing them to get them unstuck
Revealing this massive dairy factory’s ruthless thirst for profit, a downed cow — too weak to stand — was repeatedly shocked with an electric prod, until forced to walk to the milking machine.
In addition to animal cruelty, the video exposes worker safety risks at Mason Dixon, including employees handling hazardous formaldehyde with limited protective gear.
COK submitted its evidence of animal cruelty to local authorities, calling for prompt enforcement action.
“While cruelty charges have been brought in response to the cruelty in our video, we want to ensure that this kind of animal abuse never takes place again,” said Cheryl Leahy, General Counsel for Compassion Over Killing. “Mason Dixon and the companies it supplies must take action to address animal suffering and demonstrate that it will not be tolerated.”
For more details and to view investigative video, visit: https://cok.net/dairy * Warning: this video contains graphic content.
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Compassion Over Killing (COK) is a nonprofit animal protection organization working to end the abuse of farmed animals through undercover investigations, litigation, corporate outreach, public education, and other advocacy programs. https://cok.net